Hacking Your Healthcare with Dr. Mark Hyman
Dr. Hyman is a practicing family physician, a ten-time #1 New York Times bestselling author, and an internationally recognized leader, speaker, educator, and advocate in his field. He is the Director the Cleveland Clinic Center for Functional Medicine. He is also the founder and medical director of The UltraWellness Center, chairman of the board of the Institute for Functional Medicine, a medical editor of The Huffington Post, and was a regular medical contributor on many television shows including CBS This Morning, Today Show, Good Morning America, CNN, The View, Katie and The Dr. Oz Show.
Welcome to this course on how to work with your doctor to get the care you need. Functional Medicine is an individualized, science-based approach that aims to address the underlying causes of disease. Yet, most people don’t have access to a Functional Medicine specialist and are instead given treatments for their symptoms rather than long-lasting solutions for their health. This course aims to empower patients to work with their current doctor or seek out a Functional Medicine specialist to evaluate their own genetic, biochemical, and lifestyle factors and leverage that data to direct a personalized treatment plan.
02: Day 1: Health Care vs. Sick Care
It’s been said that, “The greatest obstacle to discovering the shape of the earth, the continents, and the oceans was not ignorance but the illusion of knowledge.” The same can be said for medicine. What we think we know about disease just isn’t working. Today, we talk about a revolutionary approach to health called Functional Medicine, and how you can have a healthy doctor-patient relationship. Functional Medicine is the future of conventional medicine–available now. It seeks to identify and address the root causes of disease, and views the body as one integrated system, not a collection of independent organs divided up by medical specialties. It treats the whole system, not just the symptoms. Functional Medicine is the medicine of why not what. Not, “What disease do you have and what drug do you use?” but, “Why do you have those symptoms and how can we fix the root causes and optimize your health? I truly believe that one day, this is how most physicians will practice—grounded on a foundation of personalized medicine. Thanks for tuning in.
03: Day 1: FAQ with Dr. Mary
How do I find a functional medicine practitioner in my area? This is THE most common question we receive with this course! You have decided you to work with a functional medicine practitioner, but how do you find one that fits your needs and goals?Mary explains in the video!
04: Day 2: Vital Signs
Today we start with a discussion of reference ranges, and how what medicine considers as “normal” may not be optimal for your health. Remember, normal is relative! It changes based on age, gender, physical activity, and so much more. In fact, if you were to assess someone's weight in America today, it would be normal to be overweight, because 70% of us are overweight. Yet, we keep changing the reference ranges for lab tests based on a sick population. That’s crazy! We should aspire to optimal health. Next, we apply this knowledge to the most basic medical measurements—your vital signs. Everybody knows that when you go to the doctor, the first thing you do is you get your vitals taken by the nurse: your blood pressure, your weight, your heart rate, your temperature, etc. But does your doctor tell you what these numbers mean? Do they just mean you're not dying? How can you tell if you're thriving? Let’s find out.
05: Day 2: FAQ with Dr. Mary
Day 2 FAQ: What is the best way to measure your heart rate variability? One vital sign that Dr. Hyman covers that most doctors don’t check is heart rate variability. Let’s go through some of the HRV monitors on the market.
06: Day 3: Nutrition
Every single chemical reaction in our body needs enzymes, and every single reaction needs a coenzyme, or helper. Guess what coenzymes are? They're vitamins and minerals. Guess how many chemical reactions happen in the body every second? 37 billion billion. That's 37 with 21 zeros, every second! This is why a diet that's rich in whole foods, as well as vitamins and minerals, is essential to health. Calories are abundant in our life, but the majority of Americans are deficient in one or more vitamins or minerals at the minimum amount to prevent a deficiency disease. That's right, we're overfed and undernourished. How do you know if you're one of the 90% that's lacking in something essential? Let’s talk about the tests you can use to find out, and more importantly, what to do about it.
07: Day 3: FAQ with Dr. Mary
Day 3 FAQ: If your Vitamin D levels are low, is a supplement enough on its own? If you are deficient in Vitamin D then you are likely deficient in sunlight. So how much sun exposure should you get? And what else should we know about optimal Vitamin D levels?
08: Day 4: Hormones
When our hormones are out of balance, our energy levels, our zest for life, and our moods go haywire. The main hormones we address in this video are sex hormones (testosterone, estrogen, progesterone, LH, FSH), thyroid hormones, and adrenal hormones (like cortisol). We also have to balance our insulin, but we cover that later in the course. There are many other hormones, for sure, but problems with those are more rare and specialized. What could a hormone imbalance look like for you? Do your mood and energy levels swing up and down, making you feel crazy? Do you require coffee to wake you up in the morning and wine to calm you down at night? Has your libido or sex drive decreased and you're writing it off as aging, or has your mental endurance plummeted, making it hard to focus on tasks? Do you get brain fog? These are just some symptoms of what could be a hormonal imbalance. I hope all the tests I mention in this video are helpful in determining what’s happening with your hormones, but in Functional Medicine it's essential to remember that we want to dig deeper and find a root cause. So if you have abnormal lab tests that point to low testosterone or PCOS, for example, the story should not end there. You don't want to take the pill and cross your fingers. You want to go back and find the real issue, which is often the metabolic disturbance caused by a diet that is high in starch and sugar.
09: Day 4: FAQ with Dr. Mary
Day 4 FAQ: I think I have estrogen dominance, but what should I do about it? Estrogen dominance can either be due to frank estrogen dominance, where estrogen levels are too high, or relative estrogen dominance, when progesterone is just too low. What are your options for each of those issues?
10: Day 5: Heart Health
There are some illnesses we learn about through research and some we learn about through firsthand experience. As the world’s leading cause of death, heart disease is something that should hold personal stakes for us all. For too long our cardiovascular treatments have been overly broad, incomplete, reactionary and ineffective. Instead of a proactive lifestyle change, we wait until crisis sets in and hope that a statin or some other miracle drug will fix us. This is hardly effective and a far cry from “Functional Medicine.” Today we learn which tests you should be pursuing for a total view of your heart health and how to synthesize those results systemically. We move beyond the traditional lipid profile and really look into what’s under the hood. By addressing it now, we can start to shape a plan for continued heart health for years to come.
11: Day 5: FAQ with Dr. Mary
Day 5 FAQ: Can our emotions actually affect our heart health? Our heart actually sends more information to our brain than our brain sends to our heart. This bi-directional signaling means emotions can play a big role in our heart health, and vice-versa.
12: Day 6: Diabesity and Prevention
We are more unhealthy than ever before. Our Western diet consists of higher amounts of fat, sugar and wheat than any other in the world and it is leading to the sickest population we’ve ever seen. Diabetes is occurring in record numbers. We’ve even had to re-categorize “adult onset diabetes” to “type II” because of the large numbers of children experiencing its symptoms. Pharmaceutical companies are dropping millions in research and development to come up with new treatments to fight diabetes, but very little in the form of prevention. Today’s video will lay out the symptoms and lifestyle choices of a pre-diabetic. You might be surprised how many you have. Together we’ll test to see if you’re suffering from this condition and we will lay out some effective ways to reverse the damage through diet and accurate testing.
13: Day 6: FAQ with Dr. Mary
Day 6 FAQ: For diabetes, what else can I do besides changing my diet to lower my blood sugar or insulin levels? Caffeine and stress are two factors that also impact your glucose levels. Let’s talk about why. I also want to touch on one of my favorite herbal constituents that can lower blood sugar levels.
14: Day 7: Hidden Inflammation and Disease
We’ve all experienced inflammation in some form. Red, swollen and painful—acute inflammation is never fun. But there’s an even more dangerous form of inflammation that most people are unaware of and mostly unconcerned with. We’re talking about the deep inflammation that affects your body’s cells and tissues and is a leading cause of most modern aging diseases. Today we address how to find this hidden symptom, identify it and its root causes, and stop it in its tracks. There is no optimal health with uncontrolled inflammation.
15: Day 7: FAQ with Dr. Mary
Day 7 FAQ: Why do I still have symptoms of hypothyroidism even though my thyroid hormone levels are normal? You might be saying, today Dr. Hyman didn’t talk about thyroid, he talked about inflammation! But, did you know that the most common cause of hypothyroidism is hashimoto’s hypothyroidism? At its root, this is an inflammatory condition.
16: Day 8: Metabolism and Mitochondria
Mitochondria are involved in every facet and system of your biology. They are the cellular engine that drives your body machine. Sadly, conventional medicine rarely pays attention to them, leaving many of our illnesses, aches and symptoms unaddressed. What if I told you there was a reason you feel tired, achy, and foggy all the time? And what if I told you the solution was healing your body on the cellular level? Through addressing the needs of our mitochondria we can achieve a heightened and renewed baseline for what’s “normal” and greater overall health for many years to come.
17: Day 8: FAQ with Dr. Mary
Day 8 FAQ: How do we protect our mitochondria from oxidative damage? Dr. Hyman talked about how toxins can but a real damper on our mitochondrial function, but there is one thing you MUST be doing on a daily basis to protect your mitochondria.
18: Day 9: Detoxification
The body is constantly eliminating waste through a complex network of organs and actions. It’s natural. But what happens when there’s too much toxic buildup? The system becomes overloaded and nothing gets moved out, leaving you sick and tired. Today we’ll address the ways different metabolic and environmental toxins make their way into your system and how your body eliminates them. We’ll learn to look for excess buildup of these toxins and how to boost your own ability to process them. Toxicity effects many of the systems we’ve already talked about and interacts with many of the diseases we’ve discussed. If you’re experiencing diabesity, inflammation, cellular damage, or hormonal imbalance, there’s a chance toxicity is involved or interrelated.
19: Day 9: FAQ with Dr. Mary
Day 9 FAQ: Is heavy metal chelation safe for everyone? Heavy metal chelation protocols use compounds like DMSA to pull heavy metals from the tissues so that you can excrete them from the body. There are a lot of contraindications to heavy metal chelation, but I want to focus on one of the least known ones.
20: Day 10: Digestion
Your gut is the cornerstone of your health. It holds over 100 trillion bacteria and how they go, so the body goes. If your bacteria are sick, your body is too. Imbalances in the gut flora have been linked to everything from heart disease to cancer to depression to autoimmune diseases. But if you care and nurture for these bacteria, feeding the good ones and starving the bad, you can begin to balance your gut biome and achieve a new, optimal standard of health.
21: Day 10: FAQ with Dr. Mary
Day 10 FAQ: Do probiotics change my microbiome? The gut microbiome is complicated! Researchers are still learning what all of the microbes in our gut do, and today I want to dig into an emerging treatment for gut conditions.
22: Thank You
We’ve covered so much essential information. Now you know how to take your own measurements to understand your risks and monitor your progress. You know what questions to ask your doctor, which tests matter the most, and how to understand reference ranges and lots more. Now, I hope you realize why it’s so important to become the CEO of your own health.